COVID-19 Prompts PETA Call for University of Connecticut to Shut Down Animal Labs

Experimenters Told to ‘Reduce Animal Numbers,’ Which Means Killing Animals

For Immediate Release:
April 15, 2020

Tasgola Bruner 202-483-7382

Storrs, Conn.

Because of the COVID-19 outbreak, the University of Connecticut has instructed its experimenters to “immediately reduce animal numbers and number of cages” and informed them that “no increases in cage counts will be permitted,” which will lead to the killing of at least hundreds of animals.

PETA fired off a letter today to the university’s president, Thomas Katsouleas, demanding to know why the school conducts noncritical animal experiments. PETA is also alerting the public to email the university via this Action Alert to urge transparency in how many animals the school deems nonessential and euthanizes in response to COVID-19 and to stop all current and new animal experiments.

The University of Connecticut needs to stop all current and new animal experiments, ban the breeding and purchase of animals, and switch to superior, human-relevant research methods. The school also needs to tell taxpayers how many animals it deemed extraneous and killed in response to COVID-19.

The University of Connecticut’s use of intelligent and sensitive animals in experiments as though they were nothing more than disposable laboratory equipment is shameful,” says PETA Vice President Shalin Gala. “The COVID-19 pandemic should be a moral and scientific reckoning for the school, which conducts deadly experiments on animals it keeps in small steel cages. If it can’t prove that these experiments on animals are essential—which by taking this action, they are saying they are not —it must not be permitted to continue squandering taxpayer money on inessential business-as-usual, once the pandemic is over.”

Numerous published studies have shown that animal experimentation wastes resources and lives, as more than 90% of highly promising results from basic scientific research—much of it involving animal experimentation—fail to lead to treatments for humans. (Please read under “Lack of benefit for humans” here.) And 95% of new medications that are found to be effective in animals fail in human clinical trials.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to experiment on”—opposes speciesism, which is a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit or click here.

PETA’s letter to the university is available here.

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